Tech Bytes: New Microsoft apps for Android phones

A smartphone seen with a Windows 10 operating system.
A smartphone seen with a Windows 10 operating system.PHOTO: REUTERS

New Microsoft apps for Android phones

Microsoft's Word, Excel and PowerPoint are now officially available for Android phones after a five-week preview.

These apps are optimised for smartphone screens and support third-party cloud storage providers such as Dropbox and Google Drive.

Creating and editing documents are free. However, you will need an Office 365 subscription to unlock more advanced features.

Singtel customises app for Apple Watch

Singtel has customised its news and lifestyle content app to support Apple Watch features such as Glances and "actionable notification", which offers users options to perform an action such as turning something off. It is one of the first Singapore apps for the smartwatch.

Apple Watch owners can use the free app, which curates stories from sources such as BBC and ESPN, to track top stories and save them to read later on their iPhones. The watch is available at authorised retailers and the Apple Singapore online store. Prices start at $518.

Taylor Swift's album to stream on Apple Music

Taylor Swift's hit album, 1989, will be available on Apple Music after all.

The pop singer had threatened to withhold her latest album from Apple's new music streaming service because the tech giant had not intended to pay royalties to musicians for streams during Apple Music's three-month free trial.

The firm quickly offered to compensate artists during the trial period.

Google start-up to offer free Wi-Fi in NY

New Google start-up Sidewalk Labs plans to offer free Wi-Fi in New York City as its first project. It is acquiring two companies behind LinkNYC, an initiative that aims to convert old payphone booths in New York City into Wi-Fi hot spots with phone charging, digital displays for ads and information about city services and attractions.

Sidewalk Labs focuses on improving urban areas with technology.

Netflix viewers to beat major US networks'

Netflix will have a larger 24-hour audience than the major United States broadcast networks - ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC - by next year, according to a Wall Street report.

Netflix users streamed about 10 billion hours of video in the first quarter of this year, giving it a Nielsen rating of 2.6 - the same rating received by ABC and NBC. But with Netflix growing by over 40 per cent a year, the streaming service will surpass the networks by next year.

Batman game's PC sales suspended

Publisher Warner Brothers has halted sales of the PC version of its latest Batman game after serious technical issues. It has advised buyers to request a refund if they cannot wait for a patch to resolve the performance issues. The third and final game in the Batman: Arkham series has garnered mostly positive reviews from critics.

Compiled by Vincent Chang

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 01, 2015, with the headline 'Tech Bytes: New Microsoft apps for Android phones'. Print Edition | Subscribe